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Are You Ready to be a Caregiver for Your Aging Loved One?

Mar 1, 2017 by Anonymous

Some things to consider when determining if you are ready to be a caregiver for your aging loved one include:

• Do you understand what this role entails?

Before you agree to be your parent’s family caregiver it is important that you take the time to evaluate their needs and figure out what caring for them would truly entail. You might find that you would simply not be able to fulfill these needs completely on your own and will need additional support to handle it properly. Understanding this from the beginning enables you to put those plans into place early so that your parent gets the best care immediately.

• How will you balance the needs of the rest of your family? 

Becoming a family caregiver does not mean eliminating all the rest of your care obligations. Your children and partner will still need you, which means you will need to be able to balance the care and support that you give to all of them to ensure that their needs are met and that you do not sacrifice the quality of the care that you offer.

 Is your career at a place where you can handle this change? 

Many family caregivers end up using their sick time, personal time, and even short-term leave to care for their aging parent. Others will need to go in late, leave early, work from home, or make other concessions. Ask yourself if your career is at a place where you can make these changes or if you may need to consider other options.

• Are you healthy enough for these efforts? 

Your mental, emotional, and physical health and well-being will make a tremendous impact on the quality of the care that you can give your elderly loved one. If you are suffering from complications, limitations, or challenges that keep you from being able to give your parent the level of care that they need, you might not be able to do enough to keep them safe, healthy, comfortable, and happy. It is important that you consider your mobility, strength, stamina, energy levels, balance, stress levels, and ability to handle demands when making this determination. 

No matter how prepared you feel to be a family caregiver for your elderly loved one, it is probable that at some point in your journey you will realize that the responsibilities and obligations of the role go beyond what you can fulfill comfortably, confidently, and effectively. When this happens, starting home care for them can be one of the most meaningful and compassionate decisions that you can make to help them live the highest quality of life as they age in place. A home care provider will be with your parent on a fully customized schedule tailored to their individual needs, challenges, and limitations as well as their personality, lifestyle goals, and beliefs. This means that they can live the lifestyle that they desire while still staying safe, comfortable, healthy, and happy as they age. 

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